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formerwhalerfan

Joni Pitkanen

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The thing is, isn't his type of injury a bit different than say, blowing out a knee?  Seems like either it's "heeled" ( :P see what I did there?) or not.  As compared to a knee where a player might lose mobility or have to deal with a compromised joint.  IF that's the case, why couldn't he come back at an NHL level? He's still only 32 years old. Might not his time away from the game be as much of a positive as a negative given the wear and tear an NHL d-man experiences each season?

 

Any orthopedists out there?  

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One of the most hated players ever to wear a Canes jersey. Usually by people who really couldn't tell you why they hated him. I remember sitting in the arena, listening to people yell at Pitkanen, often times when he wasn't even on the ice. Any player, especially a d-man would make a bad play and some idiot would yell something at Pitkanen. He wasn't perfect, but for a few seasons, he was the best the Canes had on the blueline. He was easily the most underappreciated player this team has ever had. If Rutherford had ever had the common sense to acquire a true #1 or #2 d pairing, Pitkanen might not have been expected to hold down the #1 spot that many felt he just wasn't quite cut out for. 

Edited by TheBigKahuna

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I think the biggest issue some fans had of Joni was that at points during a game, he'd go off to Joni-Land and just seem to be dis-interested in the game, no effort in trying to get into the play on the ice.

I am glad he is progressing and getting back on the ice. That was a very unfortunate and weird injury.

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One of the great Canes goals of all time. Have I ever mentioned that I told my wife to use our tickets and take a friend that night? I felt guilty for going to all the playoff games and she had not been. That will not happen again.

Joni was a horse of a defenseman. Once in a while, he'd venture off into Joniland and seem distracted, but the man was always on the ice. He skated effortlessly and could make passes that nobody else on the team could make.

I was in section 106, row D, seat 3.  I remember thinking Joni should've shot it instead of passing it to Seidenberg, then it was pure craziness in the arena, then i thought for sure they were going to call that goal off.  Those were fun times.

 

But to elaborate on hopper's point, he did go off into Joni-land.  It was visible in practice and pre-game warmups that he'd just be looking off in the crowd, not really engaged in what's going on on the ice.  I was always Switzerland on Joni, because he was always our top scoring dman, played well for the most part, and I met him on multiple occasions, and he was nothing but nice every time.

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He could bring the puck out of the dzone, on a team that was woefully inadequate at doing that with anyone else.

 

Sekera became that guy, and now we thankfully have several guys who seem to be able to do it.  I think it has been woefully misunderstood how important it is to have the quick and accurate zone exit to start a rush through the neutral zone before the trap can get into place.  When we couldn't do it quickly, often Joni was our only answer to exit the zone and make a gliding move or 2 to navigate the trap and at least make the center line for a dump.  An under appreciated skill that we lost when he went.  

 

His strength was never his D.

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Wow, I didn't realize that he was actually playing for Karpat in the Finish Liiga. I had heard "skating with" and assumed that meant practice.  Isn't the Liiga considered the 2nd best  league in Europe?  Maybe he can eventually make it back to the NHL.

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Sad but not unexpected with that type of foot injury

 

Pasi Tuominen @PasiTuominen

That's it for Joni Pitkanen's comeback. Won't play again this season (foot injury). Played 3 gms, scored once in FIN

 

Joni Pitkanen: "The foot simply did not cope. It's likely I will never play again."

 

 

 

 

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That is a shame.  But the last guy with that type injury apparently had trouble even walking years later.  Hopefully Pits injury only keeps him from playing hockey and doesn't effect other areas of his life. 

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That is a shame.  But the last guy with that type injury apparently had trouble even walking years later.  Hopefully Pits injury only keeps him from playing hockey and doesn't effect other areas of his life. 

 

Agree. It is a tough injury and very difficult to not have lingering effects for a lifetime. I think Joni probable needed to give it a try, needed to know before walking away from the game he loves. I hope he  does well in his post hockey career.

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His legacy is he got the icing rules changed.  Was a crying shame an icing race cost him his career.

 

I feel really bad for him.

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This is heartbreaking. 

 

Full credit for all the hard work and perseverance in working to get back, Joni. All best wishes for your post-hockey life, wherever it takes you. 

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Not many players have would have put in the work Joni did to get back out there and compete.

 

Joni also broke new ground as an "offensive" defenseman and I'll always remember him for that.  His game was ahead of the league, but the league finally caught up.

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This is heartbreaking. 

 

Full credit for all the hard work and perseverance in working to get back, Joni. All best wishes for your post-hockey life, wherever it takes you. 

 

I second this. Hope Joni stays involved in hockey on a coaching or management level, if that's what he wants to do.

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